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Brilliant experience design- the high line

June 13, 2010

 New York’ High Line park is just about a year old, although it was decades in the making.

The park that twists and turns is located on an old abandoned railway track that lies about 30ft above the ground and snakes for about 1.5 miles around the Lower West side of Manhattan.

The project has been executed with a true understanding of experience design making sure that visitors are surprised and delighted as the wind their way through the park.

There’s a strong emphasis on site lines, making sure that visitors have a strong awareness of their surroundings and the context of the park in the city. There are unexpected pieces of art dotted around the park; from torn classic paintings of nature to stained glass who’s colors match the different shades of water in the Hudson.

However, it’s the totality of the experience that wins the day and gives the visitor the sense they’ve taking in something new. We’ve all been to city parks, but not one that’s elevated above the street and crafted from something industrial and old. The secret here is the bending of nature with the park’s old industrial history and combining these with modern touches. Add on top of this brilliant furniture, graphic design and signage and it’s clear a lot of though has gone into designing the experience.

Posted by Ed Cotton

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